Rut-crippled and cracked, does
the hard-wrung landscape harbor the moisture heaven asks of it
to weep for you—

for the muddled calculations that took you through the mud, border-barred,
hips limp-aching

Flatbeds and buses your accomplices, the rolling hills your witnesses,
relentlessly expelled by way of tin villages and depleted
marshes dry as tongues,
once you make it,

the policeman’s leer will be the same,
the noxious water will still slay you,
garrulous eyes will mock your anticipación

If you don’t turn back in tears, dual-condemned citizens,
you will broach your enemy’s gasping jaws

You will not reap the winnings of those who came before—
The line drawn through rivers and deserts

removes your face on either side

This poem was published in Issue 115 of the Arlington Literary Journal, 2019.

Andy Oram
February 12, 2019